Sample of Caltrans documentation of state highways. Camera-equipped vans travel all state highways at regular intervals and shoot still images, which combine into films like these. They now have an official website, at http://video.dot.ca.gov/photolog/, where coverage of the full state may be seen. This sample was transferred from a 35mm copy of documentation made in Santa Clara and Santa Cruz counties that was given to a film producer for use in her film.
September 11, 2006 Subject:
Hey, Wasn't That a Cop Car Back There?
You may find this silent driving footage to be oddly familiar-looking if you took driverâs ed in high school. Thatâs because this is film from the driving simulator, circa mid-80s. Only itâs as if the person operating the simulator was putting the pedal to the metal. Landscapes, small towns, curvy mountain roads, roadsignsââeverything whizzes by at top speed. This has a slightly trippy feel after awhile, especially the curvy mountain roads, which seem to undulate sensually under their own power. Normally, I donât review films in the educational category that are more recent than 1980, but when I found out that this was a simulator film, I just had to have it in my collection.
Ratings: Camp/Humor Value: **. Weirdness: ***. Historical Interest: ****. Overall Rating: ****.
July 21, 2005 Subject:
short ride in a fast machine
I hear that CalTrans has gone completly digital--I cannot wait to see what Director Bob Brink can do with this new medium. This work definelty rivals the severely under-appreciated underground films of Tennessee's mountain passes, in circulation for some years now. This approaches perfection in its simplicity.
February 17, 2005 Subject:
More Twists and Turns than you can possibly imagine!
While I was awfully critical of this film being included the first time I saw this, like "what is this doing in the archive??" (ooh nasty). After reading the actual description of this, and viewing the film again, I appreciated this film a lot more. It was sort of fun watching them drive crazily all over the place, not really stopping for anything. At the speed they were going, I was waiting for them to careen off a cliff..
February 15, 2005 Subject:
Timelapse is always good!
This clip reminds me of Mike Jittlov's amazing film "The Wizard of Speed and Time"!
I too would like to see more of this kind of raw scientific/industrial footage in the archive.
Have To Agree With Everyone.Great Film.Definatly Worth A Five Star Rating.
April 30, 2004 Subject:
Did you see a hitchhiker?
That's what I kept looking for. I have to admit I like this film too.
June 15, 2003 Subject:
Very interesting film.....
This would definitely qualify as an orphan film, and I would be delighted to see more films like these here. Basically, films that aren't produced for audience viewing, unlike the majority of films on this site, but super-specialized ones like this. Films that are along the lines of scientific/industrial/medical/technological, (i.e., industrial x-ray cineflouroscope films of metal fatigue tests, ultra-slow motion test films, thermographic FLIR films, even flight simulator films, etc.) Most films like these would probably sound boring to some, but I would love to see these, due to their obscurity and orphan-ness, and for the fact that they would also make for some very interesting visuals... This driving simulator footage is definitely a step in that direction...
Reviewer:Wilford B. Wolf
May 26, 2003 Subject:
The Ultimate in Ephemeria
The Prelinger Archive has long been known for bringing ephermerial films to the masses. But this piece is just a quirkly little jem. This film, shot between Santa Cruz and San Jose, California some time in the mid-1980s (circa 1986 going by some of the car models and designs), is the film for a driving simulator. The best part is how the film is shot; rather than smooth motion, it is done with a rapid stop-motion, giving the drive along state routes 9 and 135 a surreal feeling. Add the time code at the bottom (for the computer to choose the best scanerio), and you have great bit of source material.